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Draft legislation for Shelter Island sidewalks undergoes a change

The Town Board has agreed to some changes to a proposal affecting the ability of pedestrians to use sidewalks, especially in business areas.

An original draft proposed a 3-foot area that would have to remain clear applied to all sidewalks. The major change would now affect paved sidewalks.

The change resulted from a walking tour, Town Attorney Stephen Kiely said. It  revealed that in many unpaved areas, structures such as light poles intruded on that 3-foot space. There were also areas where needed parking spaces would intrude upon the 3-foot space, particularly where some residences lacked onsite parking spaces.

The real problem, Mr. Kiely told the Town Board at the May 14 work session, is in business areas, particularly in the Heights, where the walkers concluded that Stars Café could maintain its outside tables where they are, while still allowing for a 3-foot area for pedestrians to walk.

Along Bridge Street, the sidewalks are wider and currently pose no problem. But the legislation, if adopted, would ensure no future intrusion in that 3-foot area.

On June 3, the Town Board will set a date for a public hearing for June 24.